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The Men's Rights Congress
April 7, 2004
by Matt Campbell

The men's rights movement lacks two critical elements that keep it from taking flight. The first is a lack of initiative on the part of most people who identify themselves as being sympathetic to men's rights. The second is a lack of clear, task-focused direction.

Initiative tends to be fostered by comeraderie. People tend to want to contribute more when they see others contributing. Men's rights advocates are far-flung from one another geographically and thus likely to feel isolated in their efforts; this takes a toll on their energy and commitment. A sense of hopelessness is not an uncommon result of this kind of isolation.

The only way to overcome this isolation is to simply make the effort to break it down. Frequently, getting with others is necessary to keeping your morale up in any project. In addition, leaving a meeting with an agenda that you feel can be followed and successfully implemented creates enthusiasm and excitement. The men's rights movement needs these elements in order for it to get its word out.

The Men's Rights Congress planned for June 18-19 in Washington, D.C. is an attempt to supply this critical need for men's rights advocates. Separated geographically and without a coherent, comprehensive plan of action that is practical and achievable, the men's rights movement will continue to languish. This languishing is not a luxury our society can afford.

No doubt that different men's rights advocates and organizations have different philosophical positions as well as different issues they feel are of great importance. If, however, men's rights advocates wait until most advocates are in agreement about philosophies and priorities, we will wait forever and do nothing in a comprehensive, united, and thus more effective way. Men will continue to lose their civil and human rights under the pressure of governmental chivalry and feminism, an ideology whose stated final goal is to place men uniformly at the service of women politically, culturally, socially, and morally. Sadly, over the past 35 years, this inhumane dogma has succeeded beyond its wildest dreams and now seeks to consolidate itself. Men have been too-effectively cast as a means to an end for women rather than as full, co-equal human beings with their own rights and interests relative to women. The evidence of this state of affairs is apparent to most who will read these words; to those for whom it is not apparent, I refer them to the many sources that make the case for men's rights readily available on the Internet and covered by a number of good books on the topic.

This Men's Rights Congress is a call to cohesion and to action. Note the Congress is for only two days, over Father's Day week-end. It is not meant to be a long, drawn out session of nothing but discussion and comparison of notes, ending in just a plane- or car-ride home. It is envisioned as a working, task-focused planning session from which attendees will leave with a plan acceptable to the attendees to implement along with their fellow activists, remotely cooperating as necessary and in-person, if convenient. Among other things, the Congress is meant to create and foster a new set of working relationships among individuals and organizations centered around action-oriented plans designed to fight against the problem of feminism in our society and restore equilibrium to our governmental and social conventions.

The only thing stopping the men's rights cause is the proponent who seems uninterested in doing much. Too many of us are doing little or nothing tangible for our cause. If you're not one of them, please accept my apologies. But if you are, a great way to count yourself among those who act rather than merely observe and comment is to come to the Congress.

In closing, understand that the Congress cannot happen without you. The Congress planning committee has set a goal of 50 paid regsitrants by May 1, 2004; failing to meet this number, the Congress will not be held, with registration fees and donations returned to the people who made them. This is not an arbitrary number; we need to be able to cover the costs associated with the Congress as well as make it worth the while of those who attend to have the chance to network and gain the benefit of being part of a cooperative process. Simply put, the cause needs your measurable commitment to attend this Congress in order for it to happen. If you can't attend, please consider sending a donation, but frankly, we'd rather see you there in June.

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